PEARL RIVER COUNTY, MS (WLOX) - Skeletal remains were discovered off George Mitchell Rd. in Pearl River County on Monday after a family dog dragged a femur bone out of the woods.
Coroner Derek Turnage said this is not the first time this dog has found human remains in the woods.
The black lab brought part of a skull out of the same area of woods on Aug. 19. Turnage said the area was thoroughly searched after the skull was discovered, but no other remains were found.
This time, search crews were able to have more success with the help of a bloodhound named Bo.
Pearl River County Emergency Operations Director Danny Manly said the owner of the lab contacted the sheriff's department Monday morning, and deputies worked with members of the county's search and rescue team to scour the area.
Steve Seal, volunteer chief of the Pine Grove Fire Department, is Bo's handler. At first, Seal said Bo could not pick up the scent of the remains, so he decided to try something different.
Seal tied a T-shirt around the black lab to let the dog's scent sink in. After Bo sniffed the shirt, the search resumed.
Seal said Bo tracked the scent of the lab straight to the remains about 150 yards in the woods. Seal said using a "scent article" in this manner is not common.
"We wouldn't have found these remains if it would not have been for the bloodhound," said Turnage. "He earned a steak at the next cookout."
Turnage said the remains are now on the way to the Mississippi State Crime Lab. There, they will determine if the skull and femur came from the same body.
"We're pretty sure we know who it is, but we aren't 100 percent sure. We are going to let science tell us through DNA," said Turnage.
Turnage reported Tuesday evening autopsy results show the cause of death was suicide by hanging.